Wappen Werleshausen
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Border opening 1989/1990

Politics of "perestroika" and "glasnost" of Soviet leader Michail Gorbatschow influenced also states like Poland, Hungary and GDR (East-Germany). In may 1989 the frontier between Hungary and Austria was open, and thousands of people of GDR left their state on this way or about west-German embassies in Budapest, Prague and Warsaw.

People, who stay in GDR, were very dissatisfied. They began to demonstrate for unrestricted travel, for German reunion and against the bankrupt SED-party regime. In the late summer of 1989 already hundred thousands of people took part in this demonstrations. The retirement of party leader Erich Honnecker on 18 October 1989 initiated the breakdown of SED-party regime. Finally the speech of Günter Schabowski on 9 November 1989 allowed people to travel to West-Germany, this brought the opening of the Berlin-wall. In the next days and months millions of people visited West-Germany and West-Berlin.

This unexpected, peaceful revolution had Germany-political and European dimensions. But the events, which we saw in our homeland, are certainly local and regional from great importance and involved one in lasting memory. 

Chronicle of the local events

12 November 1989: Opening of the border at Hohengandern, the federal street "B80" is made again passable. In hurry a provisional inspection point was furnished and a wave of GDR cars called "Trabbi" rolled to Hesse and Lower-Saxony.

"Trabbis" eastgerman cars are crossing the open border

19 November 1989: Opening of the border between Bad Sooden-Allendorf and Wahlhausen. A bus shuttle to Lindewerra was furnished.

borderfence at watchtower was cut

20 November 1989: Disco in the Ernst-Reuter-school in Neu-Eichenberg.

30 December 1989: Heiligenstadt organized a thank celebration with many guests from the districts in neighborhood.

7 January 1990: Under the slogan of "hands over borders" a chain of people between Witzenhausen over Hohengandern to Heiligenstadt was formed, in order to show the solidarity over the border away.

8 January 1990: Construction machines moved forward and planed the way between Werleshausen and Bornhagen.

20 January 1990: Official opening of the way; the direct way to Hanstein castle was free. Inhabitants of Neuseesen and Werleshausen met people from Bornhagen and Rimbach.

release of the way to hanstein castle; speech of local officals

release of the way to hanstein castle

border is open: release of the way to hanstein castle


March 1990: First holes in the fence, the disassembly of the border began.

the frist hole in the borderfence

29 May 1990: The railroad line Eichenberg - Arenshausen was again single-railed passable.

17 July 1999: Inauguration of the Werra-bridge between Lindewerra and Oberrieden.

Historical background

Inner german border
read more on wikipedia... 

Border opening
read more on Wikipedia...